By the nature of the writing workflow which authors have to go through, it became obvious to me early on in my journey that there would be times where I would not be writing. Having spoken to other authors, it seems to be an overall consensus that you need time away between drafts of your work. A little time to refresh the mind like a spoon of sorbet cleanses the palate between courses of your meal.
My typical workflow has four distinct areas where a break from the manuscripts occur naturally or are even forced.
- Between each of my draft reworks
- When I send the manuscript to my editor*
- When copies are out with my beta readers*
- When the final copy goes to my proofreader*
Depending on the length of your piece of work, the timings for each of the above will vary. It’s during these periods of downtime that you can work on other writing projects while refreshing your mind at the same time.
*In the case of a novel, this may be anything from four to six weeks
The key here is self-discipline because it’s easy to get side-tracked as your imagination is put to work on something new and different.
The current status of my book projects can be used as an example:
- Kharon (novel) – Off with the beta-readers
- Orang (novella)– Draft 3 complete
- Anhur (novel)– Full chapter outline complete
- Tiger (novella)– 2-page outline done
While it might look like I am extremely busy, I only ever work on one book at a time, no matter what stage it is in the process. That has to be your golden rule here, finish the task at hand. As you can see above, once the top novel is eventually published, the others all move up, and another piece of work is added to the bottom.
It is vital to have a sales funnel for your publishing if you want to be a career writer, but you have to have a manuscript funnel too. I have a notebook full of ideas for future works. The more I write, the more ideas seem to present themselves to me. I have an article dedicated to ideas and concepts and the way which I handle them. Click here to read more…
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